Do you have little ones running around the kitchen always curious about what you are doing? Kids can help you prep and cook dinner starting around age six. This can be a fun bonding experience between you and your kids because they are curious at such a young age. Having them involved in the kitchen can excite them to try new foods with a more open mind.
Regardless of the age, everyone should remember to start with the basics:
- Wash their hands
- Tie long hair back
- Don’t eat raw ingredients
Kids ages 6-7
- Crack eggs
- Measure dry ingredients
- Wash, peel, and tear fruits and vegetables
Idea: A basic starting recipe is an omelet! They are ideal for all age ranges, a good source of protein as well as a fun way to customize your meal.
Kids ages 8-9
- Use can openers
- Beat eggs with a fork
- Measure wet ingredients
Idea: A great way to upgrade the Quick and Yummy Omelet is to add beans, corn and salsa and create a more protein packed and colorful omelet!
Kids ages 10-12
- Be your assistant in the kitchen
- Slice and chop fruits and vegetables
- Use cheese graters
- Start boiling water
- Use the oven
Idea: Further upgrade your omelet by adding freshly sliced avocado.
Of course, all of this should be done with adult supervision. You know your child best, so task them how you see fit and watch them flourish in the kitchen! Know that cooking with the kids may take longer than normal, so plan to spend more time on meal preparation, cook, and clean-up time. But be sure to include the kids as much as possible in every aspect, especially cleanup!
Idea: Try this Black Bean Stuffed Peppers recipe that utilizes skill sets for all ages and tastes delicious.
Cooking with kids can create memories together and start new traditions. Although it may be messier and more time consuming, your kids will be proud of their accomplishments in the kitchen. Take a step back and enjoy the part they played in making a meal, and be proud that you could welcome them into the kitchen.
By Sierra Coley